I (Jim) am off to Melbourne Australia to research classrooms and meet with teachers on a project with Peter Sullivan and Jill Cheeseman of Monash University, and Doug Clarke and Anne Roche of Australian Catholic University. We will be studying how teachers increase the challenge of the tasks they assign students, and the factors that encourage persistence. I will be sharing some of the stories I come across from teachers down under with you in this blog over the next couple of weeks.
It will be interesting to see how our book translates to a different audience. The teachers there have copies and we will be using the principles and strategies we cover in the book to help them challenge their students, and frame the big issues of motivation in local, Australian contexts.
Of course some of the great research on student motivation has been done in Australia. Herb Marsh, Dennis McInerny, and of course Peter Sullivan, have all contributed deeply to our understanding of motivation and how it plays out individually and socially. I expect to learn a lot from my friends.